If you thought that all there is to Canberra shopping is department stores and generic chains, think again. Just another testament to Canberra's burgeoning fashions scene is chic indie online-offline boutique Mussen. Want asymmetric skirts, printed bombers or white leather shorts? This is one of the only places in Canberra you'll find just that little on-the-edgy-side styles from both coveted and obscure designers: Stylestalker, Staple the Label, Hunt No More, Wish, and more. For me, walking into this store is like walking into my world. Founder Zimona, since starting out on Ebay 5 years ago, has been consistently faithful to her style ethos of sleek silhouettes and urban chic - an aesthetic yours truly also holds - and has built a loyal local customer base, including about 80% of the girls I know. The secret to their success, for me, is that Mussen just doesn't do ordinary.
Being a Canberran naturally means that we think deeply about the ethics behind our fashion, and Mussen is leading the pack with their Animal Welfare Policy. They will not stock any real fur and leather must be by-products of the meat industry and wool must be sourced from producers with good animal husbandry.
This month, Mussen turns one, the anniversary of the official opening on the corner of Mort Street in Civic. To celebrate, Mussen invited me to raid their racks and play dress-up for some birthday shots. It was so hard to pick just a few things so in the end we've decided to do three outfits.
This first outfit is by special request by Sianne at Mussen. This is perhaps the one and only Bebe Sydney Lacery Sassy Dress left on the face of the earth. I have no words for how gorgeous this dress is. The structured bodice, the large scale pattern and the little off shoulder sleeves. Doesn't it make you feel like you're back in the black and white romance movie days?
Monday, March 10, 2014
Saturday, March 8, 2014
If you’ve just joined us, I guess I’d better explain what a ‘Flatlay’ is. In the world of ecommerce, photographing apparel laid flat on a white background just made it easier to create product images without having to bring models of mannequins involved. For fashion mags and bloggers, it’s an indispensible tool for creating fashion edits and style sets in flatlay form. Using existing flatlay images from e-tailers to create collages via websites like Polyvore is all well and good, but the best flatlays are created ‘in real life’.
As part of Westfield’s Flatlay the Nation competition, with $500 given away every day, Westfield Belconnen invited me and fellow Canberra fashion bloggers Heatstorm Blog and Style H2T to the Westfield mall for a fashion blogger’s Flatlay-Off (coin-worthy?). If you’re on Instagram, then you’ve got to know how to do a good flatlay. Here’s my short and sweet instructional video on how to Flatlay Like a Blogger! Remember, the more effort you put into your flatlay, the more amazing it will look!
Thursday, March 6, 2014
I’ve always have a soft spot for Penny from the Big Bang Theory and the relentless jokes about her lack of femininity (though the irony couldn’t be more effective, seeing as she was cast as the unattainable object of desire throughout the early seasons). My lack of appreciation for skirts, heels and brushing my hair back in my school days also made me the butt of similar jokes. However, try as I may, I could never become the girly girl that, as a kid, I thought was the standard for a girl. But pure femininity is not for everyone, after all, and to this day, nothing’s more comfortable for me than wearing what the boys wear. Slouchy shirts, wrecked jeans and stuff that’s so shapeless that they make all your lovely lady lumps disappear. Of course, I do throw in a particular shade of pink and a random flower bouquet when the mood suits. And note: the lacy camisole.
Weekends are for brunches, and recently I’ve been rediscovering Canberra’s Kingston area. I hear that too adorable for words Penny University was opened by a couple of Canberran university students who were just like ‘f*** it’, and bought a cafe. You must try the Croissant French Toast, you’ll be in heaven.
Equipment Signature Silk Shirt (here) \\ DIY distressed black jeans \\ Vintage Camisole
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Though I’m one to think that black and white is ‘just too easy’, and I’m more naturally prone to taking ‘hard-way-out’, I can’t help but gravitate to monochrome every time. It’s just like when I was pursuing the illustrator-to-be path, and pencil on white paper was always my favourite medium. I loved constructing forms and textures in monochrome. On the other hand, colour always baffled me; seemed unnecessary, even. As envious as I was of people who could so effortlessly bend colour to their will, I guess I’ll forever be stumbling over it like a pair of beautiful but impossibly impractical shoes.
Always the girl on a quest, I spent much of last year embracing my fear of colourful clothes. By the end of it I found myself with a bamboozling wardrobe that left me mentally and sartorially scattered. I’ve come to think that it’s time to accept I’m more suited to the black and white silent film era. Coincidentally, impractical shoes is another impediment in my life I’ve rather decided to live without.
And as for today’s outfit, I just wanted to point out that I purchased a slip dress from ASOS only with the single intention of wearing it as a skirt under a white T shirt. Mission accomplished.
Tickets for FASHFEST 2014—the biggest annual fashion event on Canberra’s social calendar— are on sale TODAY at 9am. Tickets for approximately 850 seats a night are being sold for the red-carpet event through www.fashfest.com.au
Last year the inaugural four-day FASHFEST was packed with more than 3,350 guests attending (1,200 were expected). The atmosphere was such a buzz. Pre-show and post-show drinks were almost as awesome as the parades.
Unlike last year, FASHFEST 2014 has Pre-assigned seating. This means tickets will sell like hotcakes! You’ve really got to be quick QUICK!
Tickets on sale:
Other types of tickets are platinum ($95), gold ($75) and general admission ($65). You can save by buying a four-day package (general admission) - $200 for all four nights.
FASHFEST 2014 will once again be held at Canberra Airport, in its industrial-chic space. Each night features new shows, so all four nights are equally worth going to.
Buy your tickets now at http://fashfest.com.au!
P.S. Dress warmly!